Faith Matters

Here we will publish articles relating to faith, the Bible, and spirituality – it’s about what we believe, and why it matters.


A 17th Century Nun’s Prayer Lord, thou knowest better than I know myself that I am growing older and someday will be old. Keep me from the fatal habit of thinking I must say something on every subject on every occasion. Release me from craving to straighten out everybody’s affairs. Make me thoughtful but not […]

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Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

A need for unity of purpose and a need to learn more about each other are reasons for praying together. Inter-denominational unity is not a realistic prospect at present. At our morning service on January 20 th Rev Iain McDonald reminded us how the United Reformed Church was formed from two denominations in the 1970’s […]

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Reflection – For Better, For Worse

It used to be simply the name for a bee that didn’t work but could fertilise the queen, or a continuous low humming sound, or part of the makeup of a bagpipe! Nowadays we must add another description of a “drone “ – a remote controlled pilotless aircraft, or in aviation speak, unmanned aerial vehicle […]

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Noel’s Prayer Page – February

Then and Now: 40 Years on In 1979, a British merchant ship rescued a hundred people from a sinking craft in the China Sea: refugees, escaping from their homeland after the fall of Saigon. The British government, in a hospitable mood at that time, set up a reception centre in the heart of England and […]

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advent lunch

Reflection on Hope – December 2018

‘The hopes and fears of all the years are met in thee tonight’ – a sentiment from the familiar carol ‘O little town of Bethlehem’. This line surely speaks to us as we face 2019, one of the least predictable years of our history ( – I am writing before the December 11 vote in […]

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Noel’s Prayer Page – December

After the Transition Town AGM held in Glenorchy Church Hall in September, Sarah Allen gave a presentation “On aiming towards zero waste.” Her campaign began last Christmas, when she saw a TV programme about a zero waste shop in Bristol and realised that her own home was full of useless wrappings. Sarah resolved always to […]

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Reflections on Global Warming – November 2018

Seventeen years ago we attended worship in an Anglican Church at the small town of Franz Josef in the South Island of New Zealand. Behind the altar was a plain glass picture window through which, from your seat in the little church, was a stunning view of a beautiful green valley running steeply down from […]

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Poppies for Remembrance

One hundred years since the end of the First World War, this is a special year of remembrance. Since 1921 the red poppy reminds us of the loss of life by those in the armed forces and those who fought alongside them in both World Wars and in subsequent conflicts. The white poppy goes back […]

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Noel’s Prayer Page – November

THE WAR TO END ALL WARS—100 years on A few week’s ago I heard Michel Morpurgo speaking at the Budleigh Literary Festival and took the opportunity to buy two of his books. One of them was War Horse. I feel it appropriate now to quote a few paragraphs from the story. It is near the […]

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Noel’s Prayer Page – October 2018

This morning I received a lovely letter from Christian Aid, thanking Glenorchy Church for the donation of £100 towards their Harvest Appeal on behalf of the Women’s Support Association, which is helping people like Aster in Ethiopia to withstand the devastating effects of change. The letter explains that our Harvest Gift has been allocated to […]

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Noel’s Prayer Page – September 2018

EMPOWERING REFUGEES This month I am passing on information from the Refugee Council, one of our Mission Committee’s chosen charities. Today, I want to tell you about Farai, a 13 year old boy from Zimbabwe, who was bullied and abused in Harare, because he was different. He fled from an abusive father and a community […]

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Minister’s Letter – September 2018

I recently heard this quote by Picasso which gave me pause for thought as I approach retirement this month and Gwen and I leave Glenorchy. It is a time of change and we have been very happy here and so I feel very much a part of the church family. The closer we get to […]

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